Monday, January 21, 2008

Martin Luther King, Ghandi and Harvey Milk

Being assasinated for what you believe in always makes you a martyr. What you believe in becomes secondary. In the Roman Catholic Church, for instance, you can become a saint after you go through a series of testamonies and a miracle or two. But when you become a martyr, sainthood is automatic. Theoretically, Hitler could have avowed his faith as a Roman Catholic after the Holocaust, been shot because of his faith, then instantly venerated as a saint. Would he have become the patron saint of ... silly mustaches?

Instant hero-worship: who's actually worthy of it? Possibly the ones who were worthy of it while they were living. Martin Luther King, Jr., Ghandi and Harvey Milk come to mind. They were also deemed worthy of intense hatred. Just ask the people who still hate them. You say no one comes to mind? Try the ones with tightly closed, lead-lined craniums.
OK, I'll get off the soapbox, but remember that today of all days, people who preach passive resistance in the face of intolerance deserve respect.

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